YOGA- System Of Self-Culture
Meditation And Spirituality 11/5/08
Yoga is a perfect practical system of self-culture. Yoga is an exact science. It aims at the harmonious development of the body, the mind and the soul. Yoga is the turning away of the senses from the objective universe and the concentration of the mind within. Yoga is eternal life in the soul or spirit. Yoga aims at controlling the mind and its modifications. The path of Yoga is an inner path whose gateway is your heart.
It helps in the co-ordination and control of the subtle forces within the body. Yoga brings in perfection, peace and everlasting happiness. Yoga can help you in your business and in your daily life. You can have calmness of mind at all times by the practice of Yoga. You can have restful sleep. You can have increased energy, vigour, vitality, longevity and a high standard of health. Yoga transmutes animal nature into divine nature and raises you to the pinnacle of divine glory and splendor.
The regular practice of Yoga will help you to control the emotions and passions and will give you power to resist temptations and to remove the disturbing elements form mind. It will enable you to keep a balanced mind always and remove fatigue. It will confer on you serenity, calmness and wonderful concentration. It will enable you to hold communion with the Lord.
However, to attain success in Yoga, it is very necessary to abandon all worldly enjoyments and practice Tapas and Brahmacharya. You will have to control the mind skillfully and tactfully. You will have to use judicious and intelligent methods to curb it. If you use force, it will become more turbulent and mischievous. It cannot be controlled by force. It will jump and drift away more and more. Those who attempt to control the mind by force are like those who endeavour to bind a furious elephant with a thin silken thread.
Yoga, therefore, presents a system of liberating the spiritual essence from this involvement, this entanglement in mental and physical processes. It achieves the effect of restoring the spiritual consciousness to its pristine state, pure original state. The thesis of Yoga is based upon the direct experience of those who became its expounders, is that your true nature, your real and essential nature, is pure bliss. It is pure peace. It is Ananda and Santi. Not sorrow. Not misery. Not grief. Not restlessness. Not agitation. Not tears. But peace and joy. It is necessary, at the outset, to clear certain misconceptions in regard to Yoga, prevalent especially among some sections in the West. Yoga is not magic or a feat of any kind, physical or mental. Yoga is based on a sound philosophy and deep psychology. It is an educational process by which the human mind is trained to become more and more natural and weaned from the unnatural conditions of life. Yoga has particular concern with psychology, and, as a study of the 'self', it transcends both general and abnormal psychology, and leads one to the supernormal level of life. In Yoga we study ourselves, while in our colleges we are told to study objects.
The purpose of Yoga is to try to restore to man his pristine state of perfect bliss; and this it does by liberating the human individual from his involvement in body, senses and mind. This involvement itself is the prime cause for keeping him away from itself, is the greatest obstacle to his attainment of that experience which the Yoga science says lies right here, present at this moment. To become liberated from the bondage of pain, thus bringing to an end the union of man's nature with pain, is Yoga.